We are so lucky here at the Riviera Guesthouse … we are part of a wonderful family and we run our independent guesthouse in Whitby, one of the loveliest places in the country … yet somehow, we felt we needed ‘something else’. 
 
There was a little dog-shaped space in our lives … and in late January 2021, it was time offer a woofy welcome to Nala! 
 
We’ve been keeping our guests and social media followers up to date as our family extended by four feet, or, more accurately, four paws! 
 
Nala Nails It 
 
As of late January, we welcomed Nala, an 8-week-old female Cavapoo (that’s cross breed comprising of a King Charles Spaniel and Poodle). 
 
Nala is impossibly cute, with adorable eyes, a lovely button nose and a curly coat in a yummy toffee colour. 
 
Our choice of pooch took some thinking about. Cavapoos are classed as a hypoallergenic breed, which means no moulting but repeat visits to the dog groomers are necessary. ‘Perfect Pooch’, anyone? We’ll probably spend more on her grooming dates than on our own haircuts! 
 
Nala will also stay in our family apartment, which is located downstairs in our guesthouse … she won’t be allowed upstairs into guest bedrooms or in the dining area. 
 
Of course, guests who want to meet her will be welcome to do so. 
 
We just need to get some puppy training in first! 
Why We Chose a Cavapoo 
 
There so many crossbreeds to choose from in the world of canines. 
 
We did our research, though, as we wanted to be able to offer a home to pooch in which he or she would be happy and be part of our family unit. 
 
Cavapoo’s are classed as a small breed (with a big heart, we might add). 
 
Their temperament is also relaxed and loving … what more could you want? 
 
Cavapoos need two or three short walks a day and love to chill out on the sofa (or in their dog bed) too, meaning they have just the right amount of playful energy. 
 
Cavapoos can also be trained fairly easily as they are an intelligent breed, and we have created her own ‘Nala’ space within our apartment. She has somewhere safe and quiet within our often busy, hectic household. 
Puppy Power! 
 
The day Nala arrived, we all melted! 
 
That’s the problem when they’re as cute as Nala is … you could go much too soft on them! 
 
As with all responsible pet ownership, the family pet needs potty training, social interaction and to know the boundaries … rather like a toddler. 
 
So, she arrived in a safe, secure manner and she fitted straight in with our family. 
 
And now, it’s as though she’s always been here. 
 
During the daylight hours, she’s a total dream dog … a gorgeous temperament, particularly with our children, and she makes us giggle all the time with her antics. 
 
You begin to see the world through your dog’s eyes, and it can be a challenge at times. 
 
With Lockdown 3.0, Nala has been a true sanity saviour, offering us love, companionship and 100% cuteness all day long. 
Nocturnal Nala 
 
However, we have found the night-time to be a bit more of a struggle. 
 
So, Nala wants 2 or 3 nocturnal toilet trips which means we’re all disturbed and there is a bit of howling to go along with this. 
 
We are sure this phase will pass, but if anyone has any tips, we’d be very grateful! 
 
We take care to exercise her a couple of times a day as we know this will be enough for her and she won’t get bored as a result. 
 
We’re all committed as a family to giving positive reinforcement to our pooch and we’ll keep things interesting and mentally stimulating for her … can you see, our lives have adjusted already to the small bundle of fluff! 
Home Schooling Hound 
 
Like many parents, we are juggling the whole ‘home schooling thing’ while the latest lockdown continues. 
 
Due to the winter conditions, we’ve found this more of an uphill climb this time around. 
 
However, Nala yet again has been a very welcome distraction to slogging away at the computer screen. 
 
She’s taken to sitting underneath Zak’s chair while he does his schoolwork, as though to say: “Hurry up, young human, you’re my best friend and I can’t wait for you to come out and play!” Nala is very, very hard to resist and she has just the right number of toys to keep her out of mischief … well, almost! 
 
Cavapoo History 
 
This breed is, rightly so, a very popular one today. 
 
When we were researching the breed, we understand Cavapoo’s were first bred in Australia in the 1990s. 
 
Mixing the aristocratic King Charles Spaniel (and later the Cavalier breeds) with the Poodle, which traditionally is a working dog and is as bright as a button. 
 
So, all in all, Nala has some great heritage traits. 
 
We understand Cavapoo’s are so loving they can sometimes get separation anxiety. As our home is also our workplace, this hopefully will not be an issue. 
Hair of the Dog 
 
Another reason we chose a Cavapoo is for the lovely coats these dogs have. 
 
Nala’s coat is soft, silky and with gentle curls. She will need regular grooming and as she looks like a teddy bear, we understand that professional grooming will be important. Their coats can get matted, so we’ll need to keep an eye on her. 
 
Food, Glorious Food 
 
Luckily, smaller breeds like Cavapoos don’t need huge amounts of food. As with most dogs (and cats) it’s easy to overfeed them, so again we’ll follow the guidelines. 
 
The food will be a bit of trial and error, we suspect, until we discover her preferences. 
 
Cavapoos can live as long as 15 years, so providing we resist giving her too many treats, we hope she’ll be with us for many years to come. 
 
Next Stage for Nala 
 
As she grows up, she’ll need vaccinations, training, various visits to the vets, and by around 12 weeks, we expect to see the real Nala. 
 
So far, she’s so lovable, patient and caring, we just can’t wait to play with her each day. 
 
So, all that remains for us to say is: “Welcome Nala!” We’ll keep you up to date on social media platforms as to her adventures. 
 
Until next time … 
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